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Atlanta’s Automobile Museums

The Greater Atlanta area is home to several fantastic and unique automobile museums. And despite the fact that Atlanta is a huge car town, with a large car enthusiast scene and a significant place in motorsports, these museums are often not commonly discussed amongst car enthusiasts or even by the traditional travel and leisure media. And we’d like to change that.

Atlanta’s Automobile Museums cover a spectrum from the new and highly polished Savoy Museum to the almost underground of the Panoz museum. So let’s get to the list.

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Savoy Automobile Museum

The Savoy Automobile Museum is one of the newest museums to join this list. Set on 37 acres in Cartersville, this polished and highly thought out Automobile Museum is full of cool cars. Unlike many traditional “car museums” that are cluttered with memorabilia, here the cars are the show. Literally. In fact, check out our Savoy Automobile Museum Review we recently published.

One thing to love about Savoy is there is something for everyone. This isn’t just a collection of old cars, but rather than tastefully planned and curated collection of cars that range from pre-war beauties to modern high performance cars. In addition these aren’t just traditional classic cars, nearly every car and vehicle displayed has a history to it, usually a contribution to design, their manufacture or the car scene in general.

On display are dozens of cars spread across several exhibition rooms that are always changing. In addition to special exhibits featuring cars loaned by private collectors, Savoy has over 100 cars in their private collection. To keep the museum fresh and changing, only about 20-30 of their collection is on display at a time. The remaining display cars are part of rotating special exhibits.

Even their special exhibits break from the norm of car museums – for example currently their special exhibits feature Porsche’s for the 75th anniversary and cars of Georgia Tech featuring student built vehicles ranging from a solar powered engineering project to a Chevy S10 that competed in Grassroots Motorsports $2000 challenge.

Where: Cartersville, about 50 miles north of Downtown Atlanta. 30 minutes – 1.5 hours from most of metro Atlanta.

Price: $15 per person general admission. Discounts, groups and membership options available.

Details: Savoy Automobile Museum

Full Review: Savoy Automobile Museum Review

Official Website: https://savoymuseum.org/

Panoz Museum

Image courtesy of Panoz

Probably the longest standing museum on this list, the Panoz Museum houses a rarely heard story of the iconic cars, the rise of Road Atlanta into motorsports lore and how Le Mans came to America. You might be forgiven for not being familiar with the story of Panoz, but now you have no excuses.

Dan Panoz and the team at Panoz build street cars based on Ford chasis, have a full series of race cars, established the racing series that through a series of mergers and acquisitions become IMSA. They even owned Road Atlanta and Sebring raceways and ran a driver school.

The story behind the rise of Panoz, their influence in the Atlanta and American motorsports, is on display. The museum features race cars, trophies, and memorable from this incredible history.

Unfortunately for the casual museum goer since the Pandemic, the Panoz Museum does not keep regular hours. Still, private events and car clubs can rent or request a private visit. It’s worth getting a group together to see this museum. As a bonus, you’ll also often get a tour of the Panoz car manufacturer facility.

Where: Braselton, about 50 miles north of Downtown Atlanta. 1 hour from most of metro Atlanta.

Price: Free, pricing by event varies

Details: Panoz Museum

Official Website: https://panoz.com/museum/

Porsche Heritage Gallery at The Porsche Experience Center

Image Courtesy Of Porsche NA

Often called “The Porsche Museum”, and not to be confused with the Porsche Museum in Germany, the official name is actually the “Heritage Gallery at the Porsche Experience Center Atlanta”. This free, self guide museum located in Porsche’s North American headquarters contains an rotating set of exhibits illustrating the timeliness of Porsche cars and motorsports history.

A recent exhibit celebrated Porsche’s Track Experience, featuring a number of their GT line of cars. Starting from the ’55 Porsche 550 Spyder all the way to the ’20 Porsche Cayman GT4, one of the newest example of track focused Porsche vehicles. Another recent exhibit was the colors of Porsche, featuring the brilliant colors of modern and classic Porsche cars. Each car in the exhibit was in a different factory Porsche color.

The Heritage Gallery is free and available to anyone visiting Porsche’s headquarters, their onsite restaurant or taking part in the Porsche Experience Center. You cannot however just walk in off of the street, you must have a reservation for one of the Porsche Experience Center activities or have other business on campus to get through security.

Still, despite the effort this is a VERY worthwhile museum. As expected, it includes cars and history you won’t easily find anywhere else.

Where: Hapeville, about 10 miles south of Downtown Atlanta. 30 mins to an 1 hour from most of metro Atlanta.

Price: Free with an Porsche Experience Center experience or restaurant reservations.

Details: Porsche Heritage Gallery

Official Website: https://www.porschedriving.com/atlanta/facilities-venue

Georgia Racing Hall Of Fame

Part of the Dawsonville History Museum, the Georgia Racing Hall Of Fame features exhibits and history around Georgia racing heritage. Heavily focused on NASCAR, though you’ll also find open wheel race cars and other memorabilia here as well.

Exhibits include an original moonshine runners car, winning cars from Georgia seven NASCAR champions including our most recent Chase Elliott, a movie about Georgia’a stock car history, a library and a kid friendly pit crew activity.

Georgia Racing Hall Of Fame is just a few miles down the road from Atlanta Motorsports Park. In fact, there is a good chance you drove right past it on the way to AMP.

Where: Dawsonville, about 50 miles north of Downtown Atlanta. 1 hours from most of metro Atlanta.

Price: $15 per person general admission. Discounts and group options available.

Details: Georgia Racing Hall Of Fame

Official Website: https://georgiaracinghof.com/museum-tour/

Miles Through Time Automotive Museum

Miles Through Time Automotive Museum in Clarksville, just a short drive from Helen and Cleveland, GA is fantastic traditional car museum. Classic American cars displayed in a building surrounded by walls covered in memorabilia, with modern classics and special interest cars mixed in.

Miles Through Time describes itself as a Co-Op museum. While they have their own vehicles, they rely heavily on private owners allowing them to display vehicles. Miles Through Time gets many of their display vehicles by offering storage to collectors. This makes for an interesting, ever changing and eclectic mix of cars on display.

Rotating cars on display feature cars from classic British cars, modern classic trucks, Porsche’s and even motorcycles. The stars are the fully restored classic American cars, Falcons, Vettes, Camaros and more.

Where: Clarksville, about 75 miles north of Downtown Atlanta. 1-1.5 hours from most of metro Atlanta.

Price: $15 per person general admission. Discounts and group options available.

Details: Miles Through Time

Official Website: https://milesthroughtime.com/

Future Atlanta Area Automotive Museums

Jim Ellis Museum

Image Courtesy Of Jim Ellis

Expected to open in 2024, the Jim Ellis Museum in Chamblee will celebrate over 50 years of history of one of Atlanta’s leading dealership chains. Part of a combined dealership (Volkswagen), office build (Jim Ellis corporate HQ) and museum building that is expected to finish construction by the end of 2023. More details coming soon as they are released.

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